Apr 19, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Avalanche center Paul Stastny (26) reacts to his empty net goal with center Nathan MacKinnon (29) in the third period against the Minnesota Wild during game two of the first round of the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Pepsi Center. The Avalanche defeated the Wild 4-2. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Stanley Cup Playoffs 2014: Game Three Preview – Colorado Avalanche vs. Minnesota Wild


The Colorado Avalanche head into game three against the Minnesota Wild in good hands as they are up 2-0 in the series. Nathan MacKinnon and Paul Stastny were key parts of their 4-2 win over the Wild Saturday night as both picked up four points (one goal, three assists) to pull ahead in the series 2-0. Speaking of the 18-year-old rookie Nathan MacKinnon, he has recorded seven points in just two playoff games.

What: Stanley Cup Playoffs 2014: Game Three:  vs. 
When: Monday, April 21st
Where: Xcel Energy Center
Time: 7:00 PM ET, 5:00 PM MT
TV: NHL Network

Rookie head coach Patrick Roy knows the team can’t become too confident heading into game three up 2-0. He has preached to his young, talented club to remain focused on the task at hand:

“We just want to remain focused,” Roy said. “Can’t make a conclusion after only two wins. Now all we’ve earned is a chance to win Game 3 tomorrow.”

With already two games in the first-round down, the Colorado Avalanche have received some good news regarding their top point scorer during the 2013-14′ season. Patrick Roy said at a press conference that centerman Matt Duchene will try to skate Monday and will be with the team in St. Paul for game three:

“That will be his first time on the ice, and we’ll see how it goes,” Roy said of Duchene, who suffered a medial collateral ligament injury March 29 against the San Jose Sharks and hasn’t played since.

Here is the spotlight player from the Minnesota Wild via The Denver Post:

Spotlight on Matt Moulson: The Wild acquired him at the trade deadline to be a factor in the playoffs, but so far in this series, he hasn’t been much of one. He has no points and only four shots on net through the first two games. But he is a three-time 30-goal scorer and requires the proper defensive attention. He was a teammate for a few years of Avalanche winger P.A. Parenteau’s with the New York Islanders.

Projected Lines for the Avalanche:

Line 1: Jamie McGinnRyan O’ReillyP.A. Parenteau
Line 2: Gabriel Landeskog – Paul Stastny – Nathan MacKinnon
Line 3: Cody McLeodMarc-Andre ClicheMaxime Talbot
Line 4: Patrick BordeleauBrad MalonePaul Carey

Defensive Pairings:

Pair 1: Jan Hejda -Erik Johnson
Pair 2: Tyson Barie – Nate Guenin
Pair 3: Nick HoldenAndre Benoit

Starting Goaltender:

Semyon Varlamov: 2-0-0, 2.88 GAA, .908% save percentage.

Tags: Colorado Avalanche Stanley Cup Playoffs